Torey Krug (Brian Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images)
Off-season surgery has sidelined Torey Krug for six months and David Krejci for five months. Krug, 25, could miss the start of next season, while Krejci’s injury puts his participation in the World Cup of Hockey in question.
Boston struggled down the home stretch and fell three points short of landing themselves a post-season berth, but the extended off-season might pay dividends for three key members of their roster. The Bruins announced Tuesday that Torey Krug, David Krejci and Matt Beleskey have all undergone off-season surgeries that will keep them out of action for significant periods of time.
Beleskey, 27, will see the shortest recovery time with only six weeks needed for him to get back to action. He had surgery to repair his left hand in mid-April, and the timeline for recovery will give the first-year Bruin more than enough time to get healthy in time for the regular season. In his first campaign with Boston after signing a five-year, $19-million deal, Beleskey netted 15 goals and 37 points.
The more worrisome injuries, though, are those to Krug and Krejci, who are expected to miss six and five months, respectively.
Krug had surgery in late-April to repair a right shoulder injury that won’t see him return to action until at least the beginning of the 2016-17 season. Krug, 25, had four goals and 44 points in 81 games this past season — all career bests — and averaged nearly 22 minutes of ice time per game. He had the second-highest average ice time among Bruins defensemen, and while there were some growing pains as he continues to develop, Krug has become an important part of Boston’s current top-four.
The only game Krug missed all season came on Dec. 27 against the Ottawa Senators when he was out with an upper-body injury, but there’s no certainty that ailment is related to the shoulder he had repaired. The six-month timeline from the date of Krug’s surgery sets his return to action for late-October, meaning the Bruins may have to be without his services several games into the new campaign.
As for Krejci, he’ll be missing five months following surgery to repair a left hip injury, but should be back before the start of the 2016-17 season. The 30-year-old center has had to deal with a number of injuries over the past several seasons, and he has missed significant time over the past four seasons battling lower-body injuries. Luckily, however, the timeline puts Krejci on track to open the season with Boston. He scored 17 goals and 63 points in 2015-16, and has been a consistent 60-point player over the past several seasons with the Bruins.
The one issue for Krejci, though, will be that his injury could put his eligibility for the World Cup of Hockey in question. He was one of the nine forwards named to the Czech Republic’s 16-player preliminary roster for the tournament, but his tentative return date would put see him back in action partway through the competition. Krejci may still keep his spot, but it could be in question with him attempting to return from injury.